Assault With a Deadly Weapon Arizona

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Phoenix Assault With a Deadly Weapon Attorney

Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney for Aggravated Assault in Phoenix, AZ

In Arizona, assault with a deadly weapon is a serious criminal charge that occurs when an individual uses a weapon capable of causing serious physical injury or death during an assault. This charge can result in significant legal consequences as well as a number of personal repercussions, making the help of a criminal defense attorney incredibly important for achieving a favorable outcome.

At the Belén Law Firm in Phoenix, Arizona, our seasoned criminal defense attorneys are well-versed in defending against such serious allegations. With a comprehensive approach to legal defense and a thorough understanding of Arizona’s laws and criminal justice system, our team is equipped to help mitigate the impact of these charges on your life.

To discuss your case with a Phoenix assault with a deadly weapon defense attorney at our firm, call (602) 715-0908 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

Assault With a Deadly Weapon Arizona

What is Assault With a Deadly Weapon?

There are a number of different scenarios that may be considered assault in Arizona. However, in general, an individual commits assault if they:

  • Intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly cause physical injury to another person; 
  • Intentionally place another person under reasonable apprehension of imminent physical injury; or
  • Knowingly touch another person with the intent to injure, insult, or provoke them.

Certain circumstances elevate the crime of simple assault in Arizona to an aggravated assault charge. One of these is the presence of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument. 

ARS § 13-1204

According to Section 13-1204 of the Arizona Revised Statutes, a person commits aggravated assault if any of the following circumstances are met:

  • Severe injury inflicted upon another person;
  • Dangerous instruments or deadly weapons are involved;
  • Temporary but substantial disfigurement, loss or impairment of a limb, or bone fracture;
  • Hindering a victim’s ability to defend themselves, such as through the use of physical constraints;
  • Trespassing into a residence with a deliberate intention to commit assault;
  • Attacking a minor;
  • Violating a protective order; or
  • Assault directed at protected persons, including law enforcement officials, correctional officers, or medical staff.

As such, if an individual commits the crime of assault while using anything that may be considered a deadly weapon, they commit aggravated assault in Arizona. 

Arizona Assault With a Deadly Weapon Charges

Examples of a Deadly Weapon or Dangerous Instrument

A deadly weapon is explicitly defined as anything designed for lethal force, primarily firearms and knives. A dangerous instrument, on the other hand, is characterized as anything that under the circumstances in which it is used, attempted to be used, or threatened to be used is readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury. 

Here are some more specific examples of items that can be considered deadly weapons or dangerous instruments under Arizona law:

  • Firearms, such as handguns, rifles, and shotguns
  • Knives, such as pocket knives, switchblades, kitchen knives, and more
  • Clubs or batons, such as golf clubs, police batons, and more
  • Motor vehicles, when used to intentionally harm someone
  • Broken bottles
  • Tools, such as hammers, screwdrivers, tire irons, wrenches, and more
  • Rocks or bricks
  • Acid or chemicals

Please note that this is not an exhaustive list, as the classification of an object as a dangerous instrument often depends on how it is used during the commission of a crime.

Is Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon a Felony?

Yes, in Arizona, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon is classified as a felony offense. Although simple assault is typically charged as a misdemeanor, the offense is elevated to a felony when there is a heightened risk of serious injury or death due to the involvement of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument.  

The exact classification of felony aggravated assault can vary based on factors such as the specifics of the case, the victim’s identity (e.g., if the victim is a peace officer), and criminal history of the alleged perpetrator, if any. With this in mind, felony charges for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon can range from a Class 3 to a Class 2 felony, with penalties including significant prison time, fines, and long-term legal consequences.

Phoenix Assault With a Deadly Weapon Lawyer

What is the Minimum Sentence for Assault With a Deadly Weapon?

In Arizona, the sentence for a person found guilty of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, generally classified as a Class 3 felony, depends on several factors, including the defendant’s prior criminal record and the specifics of the offense. If the assault involves a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument, it may require mandatory prison time even for first-time offenders.

For a first-time offender without a serious prior felony conviction, the minimum prison sentence for a Class 3 felony aggravated assault involving a deadly weapon is typically 5 years. The presumptive sentence for such a conviction is 7.5 years, while the maximum sentence is up to 15 years in prison. The defendant may also be ordered to pay up to $150,000 in fines. 

The range of sentencing may be adjusted depending on the judge’s findings regarding the circumstances of the case and the presence of any aggravating factors or mitigating factors.

Increased Penalties for Aggravated Assault Against a Protected Person

Under Arizona Law, the penalties for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon are significantly increased when the alleged victim is a “protected person.” This includes a police officer, prosecutor, and any minor under the age of 15. 

Knowingly committing aggravated assault against any of these individuals enhances the penalties to a Class 2 felony, which includes anywhere between 7 to up to 21 years in prison, up to $150,000 in fines, or both.

Phoenix Assault With a Deadly Weapon Attorney

The Importance of Hiring an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney

Facing assault with a deadly weapon charges in Arizona can be a daunting prospect, to say the least. Aside from the criminal penalties listed above, a conviction for such a violent crime can also lead to a number of other consequences, including a permanent criminal record, the loss of certain rights, difficulty finding employment and housing, and more.  

In these cases, hiring a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney can be absolutely crucial to the successful outcome of your case. Your attorney can use their legal knowledge and resources to effectively challenge the prosecution’s evidence, negotiate plea deals, protect your legal rights, and represent your interests in court. 

Overall, hiring a skilled Phoenix criminal lawyer like those at Belén Law Firm increases the likelihood of a favorable outcome, whether it’s achieving a case dismissal, reduction of charges, or a lighter sentence.

Arizona Assault With a Deadly Weapon Penalties

Potential Defenses for Aggravated Assault Charges

Defending against aggravated assault charges requires an in-depth understanding of Arizona law and the ability to present a compelling case. There are several potential defense strategies that may be employed, each taking into account the specifics of the incident and the evidence available. 

Some of the more common defenses that may be used include:

  • Self-Defense: Arguing that the defendant’s actions were a necessary response to a threat posed by the alleged victim. This justification defense is viable if it can be shown that a reasonable person in the defendant’s position would have perceived an imminent threat of harm.
  • Defense of Others: Similar to self-defense, this strategy involves the defendant asserting that their actions were necessary to prevent harm to another person.
  • Lack of Intent: Since aggravated assault typically requires a culpable mental state, demonstrating that the defendant did not have the intent to harm or threaten harm can be an effective defense. This may involve questioning the defendant’s mental capacity at the time of the incident.
  • Reasonable Doubt: Casting doubt on any aspect of the prosecution’s case, such as the credibility of witnesses or the integrity of evidence, to show that there is reasonable doubt about the defendant’s guilt.
  • Insufficient Evidence: Highlighting the lack of concrete evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant was the perpetrator or that the actions met the legal definition of aggravated assault.
  • Mistaken Identity: Asserting that the defendant was incorrectly identified as the alleged perpetrator of the assault.
  • Civil Rights Violations: Arguing that the defendant’s rights were violated during the investigation or arrest, such as through unlawful search and seizure, which could lead to the exclusion of evidence or even dismissal of the charges.
  • Alibi: Demonstrating that the defendant was not present at the scene of the crime and therefore could not have committed the alleged assault.

Each of these defenses requires careful preparation and a detailed understanding of all aspects of the case, underscoring the need for experienced legal representation in Phoenix aggravated assault cases.

Phoenix Assault With a Deadly Weapon Defense Attorneys

Why Choose Belén?

When facing charges of assault with a deadly weapon in Arizona, working with the experienced Phoenix criminal defense attorneys at Belén Law Firm can significantly improve your chances of securing a favorable outcome. Our firm regularly works with clients accused of violent crimes, from misdemeanor assault to felony assault to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and more. 

At Belén Law Firm, you’ll find dedicated professionals who have a comprehensive understanding of Arizona’s criminal justice system and who will advocate fiercely on your behalf. Our Phoenix assault attorneys are known for their strategic thinking, thorough preparation, and strong defense tactics, all of which are critical in challenging the prosecution’s case. 

With a proven track record of success, Belén Law Firm offers the dedicated and aggressive representation you need to fight these daunting criminal charges and work towards the best possible resolution.

Phoenix Assault With a Deadly Weapon Defense Lawyer

Call the Phoenix Aggravated Assault Defense Attorneys at Belén Law Firm For a Free Consultation Today 

A conviction for aggravated assault in Arizona can lead to lengthy prison sentences, hefty fines, and a number of other personal and professional consequences. That is why it is so important that those facing charges for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon in Maricopa County, AZ, or the surrounding areas seek help from an experienced Phoenix aggravated assault attorney at Belén Law Firm ASAP. 

Our Phoenix-based criminal defense team is committed to fighting for your rights and achieving the best possible outcome, whatever that may look like given the specifics of your case. To speak with an experienced attorney on our team, call our law office at (602) 715-0908 or complete our online intake form to schedule a free initial consultation today.

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